Hello Azure Active Directory Connect

Say Hello to Azure AD Connect, the future replacement for DirSync and the combination of Azure AD Sync and DirSync.

Connect your Active Directory with Azure Active Directory in only 4 clicks, now wouldn’t that be nice? Express Settings.


But we know it isn’t allways that easy, or the majority of times it isn’t. It’s like advertising Office 365 for the monthly fee and don’t mention the migration isn’t Magic happening for free.

Azure AD Connect is now in Public Preview (Public Beta) and not yet supported in Production environment, because there might still be bugs. The Preview is for us to get a headstart and give feedback on bugs until the General Available version releases.

I want to highlight a couple of features from Azure AD Sync, that haven’t been available for DirSync:

Multiforest Sync to one Office 365 tenant:

Add several Active Directory Forests to synchronize Objects into one Azure Active Directory. Usefull for hosters and customers supporting multple AD Forests. The Server which Azure AD Connect is installed will need local network Connection With each AD Forest.


Incase you can’t UserPrincipalName to match the wanted Office 365 Login Name:

We can also change the uniqe identifier which we match or map AD Objects with AAD Objects, but I don’t know why we would wanne change it from objectGUID.

Changing the attribute used for UPN still need to be in username@domain.com, so we can choose the Mail attribute or some custom attribute holding an email address. Remember it must be routable on the Internet to make it into Office 365.


Source: TechNet blog by Alex Simmons.


I am Roy Apalnes, a Microsoft Cloud Evangelist working av Sopra Steria. Main focus in Microsoft Security and Endpoint Management, with a bigger picture in mind.

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